It’s a wrap! More than 70 candidates submitted their mobile app projects to participate in Be-Bound’s startup challenge – #CameroonBound – a 48 hour hackathon in Douala, Cameroon that took place October 27th and 28th. In collaboration with Will & Brothers, Le Lab Innovation de la Société Générale, and the Cameroonian incubator, ActivSpaces, the event was meant to bring to light the most promising solutions made by local Cameroonians for the local population. The competition was open to 9 categories: Blockchain, health, education, AI, software, hardware, eCommerce, IoT, and agriculture. In the end, 12 projects were selected to participate in the weekend hackathon. Over the course of 2 days, the selected developers and entrepreneurs worked on polishing their plans for deployment and presenting their mobile app project to an expert jury.
François Stephan and Guillaume Favez represented Be-Bound at the event and accompanied the developers as they worked on different elements for their app ideas. After 2 days of work, three lucky winners were chosen. The winners will receive further assistance developing their app and integrating Be-Bound Augmented Connectivity. By integrating Augmented Connectivity they will be able to cover 92.5% of the country’s population in Cameroon, and their app will work everywhere there is a mobile telephone network available, with or without internet.
Winners also receive 1 year of technical support from Be-Bound with access to the Be-Bound SDK, and the assistance of our Head of Deployments, as well as 1 year of business consulting with Will & Brothers, and financial assistance from the Société Générale.
With this event, Be-Bound discovered the motivation of the Cameroonian youth, the entrepreneurial spirit and desire to make a difference and change things for the better for their country and continent. The majority of the applicants submitted projects that were inclusive, and made for the whole population, for the whole country, not just villages. These types of projects are definitely going to confront problems of connectivity, something which proves there is a need for Be-Bound Augmented Connectivity to fill in the gaps where connectivity is problematic. With partners like Société Générale and Orange counted among members of the hackathon jury, it’s clear that the large companies present in Cameroon understand that innovation for the country comes from working with young local entrepreneurs.
Guillaume Favez, Be-Bound’s Head of Deployments, said, “I loved helping the developers and entrepreneurs with their projects. We defined their targets, their market, their added value, and worked on how to present their projects in a limited amount of time. I was really impressed by their energy and ideas. Just one regret: among the 12 finalists, we only had 1 woman: something we will try to improve on for our next editions!”
For more about the winners, see below:
1st Place: E-Farms
Founded by Gerald Nondia, E-Farms is an app to put farmers in touch with the market in Cameroon, where agriculture represents the primary source of growth and revenue. The app enables farmers to easily get their products on the market, online, to the whole world, and at a legal price. These producers are therefore assured that they will be correctly remunerated and the buyer is guaranteed traceability of products.
2nd Place: Protodev
Born from the collaboration of the startup Protodev, and the founders Etubo Leslie Tabe, and Tchabo Paul, Qpay is an app that offers a secure solution for mobile payments. The solution includes all the mobile payment methods to facilitate money transfers by QR Code, NFC and SMS gateway, while giving a detailed record of all transactions, so the user can better manage their money.
3rd Place: Save
The third prize was given to the Save project, a social network for health and security that lets the user keep an eye on their friends and family. In a country with unequal geographic distribution of health workers and security, the population needs the power to bring the first response in case of a risky situation, even in the most remote zones. Save proposes a secure way to optimize assistance to a person in danger, by giving access in real time to all the information necessary to come to their aid. The app uses the position, the description of the situation and the nearest points of assistance, and medical history.
Follow Save on Facebook.
IN THEIR OWN WORDS
E-Farms – Gerald Nondia and Yannick Fotso :
“A magic moment, a unique moment. Strong times, and strong men. Brainstorming around digital intelligence. It’s more encouraging and boosting to have a brotherhood driven by innovation, digitalizing solutions to improve daily lives. Speaking as a contestant like the others, and not a winner, I would say that we were all winners because we all wrote the history of Be-Bound together with this first Edition of the Cameroon challenge.”
“Before the Be-Bound competition, we had no way to meet the right people in the field of technology. The competition was so intense that now we have a more positive spirit and the courage to advance our idea. We succeeded in getting the judges and other contestants to believe in our idea and we found new partners. All of this thanks to the Be-Bound Startup Challenge.”
Save – Samuel Thierry Njock
“This hackathon was a unique experience that enabled Save to be evaluated by international digital actors. It also helped us look at our own project through a new lens and find new axes to give it a competitive edge internationally. But above all, the hackathon gave us, in very little time, the chance to work on our project and leave with a better version of it than we had when we arrived.”
With Be-Bound Augmented Connectivity, the winning apps will be accessible with or without internet, to offer constant reliability and availability to the services, everywhere, for everyone.